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Lemon juice on fish--I prefer none

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Why is it that fish is so often served with a slice of lemon?

For my taste, lemon juice competes with a fresh fish flavor. There must be a reason for it, but I don't know what it is. I love seafood. Is it for fish that isn't fresh?

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post #2 of 17
The old legend I hear is that if you accidentally swallowed a bone, the acid would help dissolve it.

The lemon is served on the side because while you may prefer not to have it, others insist on it. I don't mind a quick squeeze of lemon juice on my fish, but again it boils down to personal preference.
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
No harm in that preference, of course.

I just wondered why so many like it. Maybe my taste buds are out of whack.
post #4 of 17
I guess with oily fish like mackerel it helps cut through the fatty taste. Or for the same reason if its been battered/crumbed and fried/deep fried.
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
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post #5 of 17
In the old days fish used to be not so fresh. :)
post #6 of 17
I have to agree that lemon juice certainly hides the taste of not so fresh seafood to a certain degree, but I also feel that a hint of lemon can help even very fresh fish.

I've recently tried out the "technique" of placing lemon slices on the flesh side of my fish when I do a pan seared fish dish. I find it gives the slightest hint of freshness without it being overwhelmingly lemony. It also prevents the flesh side from browning overly and being dry.
"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
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"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
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post #7 of 17
Could it have started out as a substitute for malt vinegar?
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post #8 of 17
I must confess that fish & lemon were bonded so thoroughly & so early for me that most seafood doesn't taste quite right without some lemon. Just like I'd almost rather not eat pizza if there's no crushed red pepper.
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post #9 of 17
No lemon for me at all ever. Ive tried it and when i get to the spots where the lemon dripped its like WOOOH!!! yeah not my things. Ill leave the lemon in my tea.

Somewhat related.

I dont get the drawnbutter with lobster/crab etc.....

Well i get it as it is a fat to help wit the leanness of the meat and blah blah blah

but maybe its my taste and the simple preparation i go for
but give me some nice steamed crab legs or lobster with what ever and im good to go......
post #10 of 17
When doesn't butter make an already great thing taste better?
post #11 of 17
Wow! I admire you taste buds!

I admit I side with RAS1187, butter is irresistible to me.

What about with shrimp? Lemon butter scampi...:lips:
post #12 of 17
I've heard that lemon juice will prevent ones fingers from getting a fishy smell on them, not that most folks eat their fish with their fingers, but I've often seen people touch their fingers to a lemon on their plate when eating cold shrimp at a cocktail party.
post #13 of 17
I agree with that one.

I dont like lemon with my seafood. i do like lemons in general though

my shrimp scampi i make it simple

butter (alot of it) a good EVOO some roasted garlic and sme white wine

ohh yeah
post #14 of 17
Lemon is a traditional part of mediterranean accompaniments for seafood. Being from Greece I associate lemons and seafood naturally. We're not like the French who make wonderful butter sauces, not like the English who batter and fry, not like Indian who bury in curry.

The meditarrean logic on seafood is the simpler the better. Lemon is like a magnifying glass on flavors. It works best when used on a very simple preparation of seafood like seasoned with salt and pepper, and grilled. It is only meant to enhance, not mask.

Try this simple dressing on your next fillet.

-2 lemons juiced
-tbsp chopped parsley
-salt
-evoo

In a FP or by hand, which the juice, parsley, and salt until well incorporated. Slowly and while whisking drizzle the olive oil into the bowl, constantly whisking until it emulsifies. Drizzle on a filet and enjoy.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #15 of 17
Lemon buerre blanc, on broiled salmon. Lemon and butter, butter and lemon, best of both worlds.
post #16 of 17
a little sourness will enhance the natural sweetness of the fish..
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post #17 of 17
I don't think your taste buds are out of whack. You must just be a high taster. They sound perfect. I on the other hand season my food so heavly that only strong flavors come through. I think I've burned mine out :o
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